I know this is a long overdue newsletter... I haven't written since March, yikes! Paul and I had a very busy summer! I'm still a bit in denial that Fall is coming, but here and there I am seeing orange-tinted trees, so... Anyway, hoping you all had a wonderful summer and (for those of you involved in education) that you're enjoying the new school year! Lots to update you on, so I will jump right in:
It's hard to believe that this summer has already come and gone! In the past few months, Paul and I traveled for music more than ever before... All the places we visited were super fun, but June stood out as particularly special and unusual because it included visits to three different countries!

ICELAND : My husband Paul, my guitarist Al Church and I hopped a plane on June 1st to head to Reykjavik, Iceland to speak and perform in the Reykjavik Arts Festival. Not only did we get to explore a new country, but we were met by a welcoming and vibrant arts community -- true kindred spirits. It felt a little like a parallel-universe of Duluth, because of the weather and the water... But it never got completely dark while we were there, because we were in the Land of the Midnight Sun!

SWITZERLAND: On June 11th Paul and I flew overseas again to Switzerland as an Arts Envoy project with the US Embassy in Bern. There we met a visionary violinist and conductor, Denis Huna, who runs an inclusive orchestra called Tabula Musica, which is comprised mainly of disabled musicians. He invited me to be the guest performer for their annual concert, Zukunftsmusik, and the US Embassy in Bern arranged school visits. Bern is absolutely breathtaking and the people we met were the kindest, funniest, and most thoughtful hosts. That trip was made extra special because my parents decided to visit us during part of our stay... We had fun exploring the beautiful surroundings together!

FRANCE: Instead of flying home from Switzerland, Paul and I decided to take the train to a city I've badly wanted to visit since 7th grade French Class - Paris! Life is short, right? I was a little nervous that a place I've been building up in my head for 20 years wouldn't live up to the hype, but very happily it exceeded expectations. Paul and I had a much-needed romantic vacation in the City of Lights and soaked in all Paris has to offer. My favorite things were the Eiffel Tour (of course), people-watching on the banks of the Seine (while snacking on baguettes, cheese, and wine), and a dinner cruise on the River... It was a dream come true and I am so glad I got to see it finally with Paul. It was definitely worth the wait.

Other highlights of the summer included the Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation (OIF) National Conference in Baltimore in mid-July, and then Travelers' Rest Festival (hosted by The Decemberists) in Montana and the Spiritual Science Fellowship (SSF-IIIHS) Conference in Montreal, both in August. I am so grateful that music has allowed us to see other parts of the country and the world... Something I definitely wouldn't have predicted a couple years ago! Who knows where we'll end up next?
In case you didn't know - my new album, " Learning How to Stay ", came out on Friday, September 7th! It features 9 of my original songs and my takes on two traditional fiddle tunes, all backed by a full band. I was lucky to work with a number of talented musicians on this album, including Dave Mehling , Al Church , Martin Dosh , Andrew Foreman , Alan Sparhawk , and many others. The album has received a few lovely reviews so far, in Strings Magazine , No Depression , and Louder Than War ... And it's only a few days old, so hopefully it will be discovered by other publications down the road. Ultimately the reviews are not what matter, though... I started this record over a year ago and I am so excited to finally be sharing the music with YOU!

If you haven't listened yet, you can stream it online worldwide now! For those of you who prefer physical copies, CDs and vinyls will soon be for sale here , or they can be purchased at a show! If you pre-ordered a copy through my GoFundMe , you'll be receiving your copy in the mail within the next couple weeks!

Although I self-released the album in the US, I am excited to announce that I'm partnering with Damnably Records in the UK! They will be pressing their own versions of the vinyls later this Fall and then helping me promote my music and future tours overseas. I am currently planning a December tour that will include stops in the UK and Ireland, so keep posted here for future dates as details get sorted.

As I reflect on the release of "Learning How to Stay", I am filled with gratitude, wonder, and anticipation. I feel gratitude for all the people who contributed their time, talents, and (in the case of my GoFundMe supporters) financial support to make this album a reality; I never could have created this project alone and it is better because of the people involved. I feel wonder at how a song can grow from a single line that you start humming in the shower, on a bench at a park or in the back of van into a sculpture of sound... I am in awe of how each of these songs morphed in the studio into their own little nuanced landscapes. I feel anticipation because I've been working on this project for over a year, and I am excited to share it with the world... I am truly happy with how the album turned out and I hope it brings other people joy.
Now that the album is finally out, my husband Paul, my guitarist Dave Mehling and I are hitting the road! We are doing a pretty extensive September Tour to the East Coast and back that kicked off in Eau Claire on the 7th and continues until September 30th.

Don't live on the East Coast? No worries! I am planning to visit nearly every region of the country between now and June 2019, so keep your eyes peeled for shows as they get added to my events calendar !

I started doing my own booking earlier this summer with the help of an awesome assistant, Brett! It's a fair amount of work, but it's also a lot of fun -- like putting together a giant puzzle. The reason I wanted to let you know about the new booking arrangement is because I would love your input! Where should I play? Do you have any favorite wheelchair-accessible music venues in your town? Feel free to respond to this email with your ideas, because I am always open to suggestions !

That's it for now, Friends... Thank you for reading this Fall update! Take good care of yourselves and keep in touch!

Gaelynn Lea
  • 9/10 Pittsburgh, PA: SunnyhillLive! at Unitarian Universalist Church of the South Hills | GET TICKETS

  • 9/11 Lancaster, PA: Community Room on King | GET TICKETS

  • 9/13 Lakewood, NJ: Gaelynn Lea at The Strand Theater - Gallery | GET TICKETS

  • 9/14 Philadelphia, PA: Mutual Irradiation 01: Gaelynn Lea and Kingsley Ibenche at The Galleries at Moore College | FREE SHOW

  • 9/15 New York City, NY: Gaelynn Lea w/ opener Celisse at Joe's Pub | GET TICKETS

  • 9/16 Gill, MA: Gaelynn Lea at Antenna Cloud Farm | GET TICKETS

  • 9/17 Boston, MA: Gaelynn Lea at Hennessy's Bar with special guests The Flower Pistils | GET TICKETS

  • 9/18 Portland, ME: Gaelynn Lea with Mehetable at The Apohadion Theater | GET TICKETS

  • 9/19 Burlington, VT: Gaelynn Lea at Radio Bean | GET TICKETS

  • 9/20 Montreal, QC: Gaelynn Lea with Melankolya at Unitarian Church of Montréal | GET TICKETS

  • 9/21 Ithaca, NY: Gaelynn Lea with Judy Stock at First Unitarian Society of Ithaca | GET TICKETS

  • 9/22 Fairport, NY: WRUR Different Radio Presents Gaelynn Lea at Iron Smoke Distillery | FREE SHOW

  • 9/24 Niagara Falls, NY: Gaelynn Lea Performs for Empower Events at Old Falls Street | FREE SHOW

  • 9/25 Guelph, ON: CFRU Presents Gaelynn Lea at University of Guelph | DETAILS

  • 9/25 Toronto, ON: Gaelynn Lea at Small World Music Centre | GET TICKETS
  • 9/26 Akron, OH: WAPS The Summit Radio Presents Gaelynn Lea at the Akron Rotary Camp | GET TICKETS

  • 9/28 Port Huron, MI: Gaelynn Lea at St. Clair County Community College Fine Arts Auditorium | FREE SHOW

  • 9/29 Chicago, IL: Gaelynn Lea Performs at Elevated Songwriter Series | GET TICKETS

  • 9/30 Viroqua, WI: Gaelynn Lea with Shawn Neary at Driftless Books | GET TICKETS
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